Max Scherzer treated his rehab start in Binghamton on Tuesday like Game 7 of the World Series
We all know Max Scherzer is a little touched. No one has ever thrown a baseball—not Nolan Ryan, not Randy Johnson, maybe Roger Clemens—with as much-mad dog mania as Scherzer. That one-billion-percent commitment has paid for Scherzer as well, frothing and f-bombing his way into the elite tier of an elite pitching generation, racking up over 3,000 strikeouts along the way. On Tuesday, however, Scherzer had a slightly different brief when he suited up in Binghamton for a rehab assignment after straining his oblique in May: Go out there, get your feet wet, don’t go nuts.
Needless to say, Scherzer didn’t listen.
That was the Mets ace in the dugout before the game, getting ready to pitch a couple innings of Double-A ball for a team called the Rumble Ponies like it was Game 7 of the World Series. And it wasn’t just pregame jitters either. Scherzer could be seen pacing the dugout between innings as well, adrenaline to burn in a meaningless game on a team he's not even a player for.
You honestly love to see it and you have to wonder how good guys like Strasburg and Wheeler and even Kershaw could have been if they had a few more screws loose and a few extras wires crossed. As for Scherzer, he went three and a third, striking out six while giving up three hits, two runs, and a walk. Perfectly cromulent for a rehab start, but if we know Scherzer like we think we do, he’s probably still kicking over Gatorade coolers this morning.